From Your Reading Of "Macbeth" Do You Think He Is Actually Responsible For The Events That Take Place In The Play?

1371 words - 5 pages

From your reading of "Macbeth" do you think he is actually responsible for the events that take place in the play?

In my opinion, the responsibility for Macbeth's downfall and subsequent events in the play can be equally shared between Macbeth, the witches and Lady Macbeth. When Macbeth starts to believe the witches that he would be king, his mind is filled with ideas about how he can accelerate his rise to the throne. Later, Lady Macbeth's power of persuasion drives him to become the man we see at the end of the play. Lastly Macbeth's mental weakness as well as his driving ambition causes his change in character and downfall.

Fate too, has a lot to do with the downfall of Macbeth., not just Lady Macbeth corrupting him. The weird sisters use fate to convince Macbeth what he is to become in the near future. They appear to have the ability to travel in and out of time at will, which allows them to see the future and to change its path. This ability leads to some interesting and important moments in the play. For one, the witches already seem to know the fate of Macbeth and Banquo at the beginning of the play. Their involvement in Macbeth's life is also instrumental in his downfall.

At the beginning of Act One Shakespeare introduces the character of Macbeth to the audience. He is described as a brave and strong, victorious soldier in a conversation between the captain and Duncan. This is significant because the King admires his bravery in battle, and compliments him by referring to him as:

"Oh valiant cousin, worthy gentleman".

And later the captain says:

"For brave Macbeth - well he deserves that name - disdaining fortune with his brandished steel...."

This complements Macbeth on his ability to overcome powers greater than himself by using his skill, cunning and strategy. The second part of the conversation is significant as this shows Macbeth's bravery in more detail, as it says he never gave up until he had won, showing great determination. This is important because it tells the reader about Macbeth before we get to see him. The reader has positive expectations of him, Shakespeare uses this idea to shock the reader when they see Macbeth "fall".

Macbeth is seen as a courageous soldier who is loyal to the King but is corrupted by the witches' prophecies and by his and Lady Macbeth's ambition. His ultimate downfall is due to the weakness of his character and the strong power Lady Macbeth has in being able to easily influence him. Her strength motivates him at the start but after he realises what he has done, he himself continues in his murderous, bloody path. It seems to me that Lady Macbeth's scheming and dangerous nature have much to do with events in the play.

While Macbeth is a strong soldier who fights for the King without mercy, his strive for...

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